Ralph Waldo Emerson
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George Washington and his kin may have been America's Founding Fathers, but Emerson may have been our Founding Thinker. This hour-long documentary makes the case that Emerson's philosophies formed the basis of a uniquely American ideology that influences us today.
Okay, so Emerson isn't actually in this movie. But if you want a sense of what transcendentalist life might have been like in 1860s Concord, then this movie is for you. It's based on the book by Louisa May Alcott, whose father Bronson was a major player in the Transcendentalist movement.
In this short film set in 1847, two impoverished children from the Boston slums stumble upon a strange cabin in the woods near Walden Pond. Its enigmatic resident helps them to see that though they are poor in worldly goods, they are rich in the things that really matter. Guess who it is!